St. Francis of Assisi was born in Italy in the early 13th century. He is known for his deep love of poverty and humility, and he is the patron saint of animals and the environment. He founded the Order of Friars Minor, also known as the Franciscans, and his teachings and writings have had a profound influence on the Catholic Church and on Western spirituality. St. Francis is often depicted with birds and other animals, as he was known for his love and compassion for all creatures. He is also associated with the Christmas tradition of the Nativity scene, as he is credited with creating the first live Nativity scene in order to encourage a deeper understanding of the birth of Jesus Christ.